Florida DUI Manslaughter Law
Under Florida DUI law, you may be guilty of DUI manslaughter if you drive a vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol and cause a car accident that results in the death of an innocent person. The death of the innocent person does not have to occur immediately after the accident. If a person is injured in the accident and then later dies from the injures, the defendant may be charged with DUI manslaughter.
DUI manslaughter may be charged as either a second or first degree felony depending on the facts of the case. Under Florida DUI law, the defendant will be charged with a second degree felony unless there are grounds to increase the charge to a first degree felony. For instance, if the defendant fled the scene of the accident after it happened, the prosecutor may escalate the charge to a first degree felony. If convicted of a first degree felony the defendant may be sentenced to up to 30 years in prison and fined up to $10,000. On the other hand, if convicted of a second degree felony the driver will face a maximum prison sentence of 15 years and a $10,000 fine.
Tampa DUI Law Firm Defending Your Rights
In DUI manslaughter cases, the prosecutor must show that the driver caused or contributed to the accident and that the driver was under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of the accident. In all DUI cases we carefully review every detail of the case to identify possible defenses for our clients. We aggressively scrutinize the initial stop by law enforcement, alcohol or drug testing results, witness testimony, sobriety testing procedures, and any other piece of evidence that the prosecutor may try to use against our client. Furthermore, in DUI cases involving accidents, a driver may be wrongfully accused because they appear to be intoxicated due to the trauma and stress that the accident caused. For instance, a car accident can cause a driver to have bloodshot eyes, slurred speech, anxiety, and problems balancing or standing – all of which can significantly impact an individual’s performance on field sobriety exercises.
Our Tampa DUI lawyers will aggressively use these and any other methods of defense to help our clients. If you have been arrested for DUI and want to know what defenses you may have available, contact us today for a free consultation.